I am a teacher educator and educational researcher at Marquette University, where I am an Assistant Professor of Education Policy & Leadership in the College of Education and where I lead our work in social studies education.
My teaching career began in the suburbs of Chicago, and has spanned a range of settings: Chicago's West Englewood neighborhood, Los Angeles's Watts neighborhood, a Wisconsin farming community, and Guadalajara, Mexico. Additionally, I have led educational and service learning programs in Washington DC, Cincinnati, New York City, South Africa, Chicago, and Peru. These experiences in diverse and wildly unequal educational settings motivated my work at the University of Wisconsin Madison, where I completed a PhD in Curriculum & Instruction and Education Policy Studies, with a focus on Multicultural Education.
My research examines how diverse schools work to enact educational justice in classrooms. I primarily research pedagogy, or the art, practice, and theory of teaching. In particular, I study democratic pedagogies that promote equity and youth empowerment, such as critical civic education. In addition to examining classroom life, my work analyzes how to best prepare justice-oriented teachers as well as the social context in which that work is embedded. Ultimately, I want my research to help expand our pedagogical imaginations, to help us as educators and citizens re-envision what schooling could be. My work has appeared in Multicultural Perspectives, Equity & Excellence in Education, Teachers College Record, The Social Studies, The Journal of Adult & Adolescent Literacy, and Intercultural Education, as well as in several edited volumes.